typing is not activism….

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Breaking Pulp Mill news – Liberal candidate for Lyons quits Party, Greens closer to legal action.

with 7 comments

Goddam it’ll be nice when John Gay finally announces that

“All we’ve tried to do is give this state the best possible chance it has for a bright future but due to the persistent sabotage and whining of boutique lefty interest groups – like Bob Brown, Christine Milne, the AMA, green NGOs, Terry Martin, Warwick Raverty, Peter Whish-Wilson, Sue Neales, Matthew Denholm, Geoffrey Cousins, pretty much the entire Tamar Valley, Malcolm Turnbull’s electorate, traders on the global pulp futures market, the ANZ bank, seals, penguins, eagles, and the atmosphere – it is a very sad day for me and at least 17 other Australians as I announce that we shall not be bringing the next step in the evolution of biodiversity, which is of course dioxins and pulped old growth, to Tasmania. You poor sad fools. I’m going to go home and cry now. Paul, get me some f&%#ing tissues.”

But until then the incident-rich war of attrition continues. Ben Quin, Federal Liberal candidate for the marginal seat of Lyons – which adjoins the pulp mill district of Bass – has just announced his resignation from the Party.

Mr Quin said it was now impossible for many people to distinguish between state and federal responsibility.

“With federal approvals now granted, there is no effective way for the majority to express their opposition,” he said.

“This has become political bullying and represents a fundamental failure of democracy in Tasmania.

“I will not stand as a Liberal candidate in support of such circumstances.”

Crucially close to an edge-of-the-seat election the Liberals have responded the only way they can – with a bitchy bout of sulkery:

“Having supported Mr Quin for the past two years as the candidate for Lyons and also at the 2004 election, it is regrettable that he has this close to an election taken the decision to walk away from his commitment to the party and his many supporters.”

Tossers. Speaking of flippant insults, I was feeling somewhat guilty about finally emptying my pockets of any crumbs of hope that Peter Garrett might suddenly emerge from a phone box wearing a cape made of organic hemp with a huge green ‘S’ on his chest. But then he further clarified his position.

Mr Garrett argued yesterday that the tracts of old-growth forest that will supply the mill were already earmarked for logging under the Regional Forest Agreement.

“One of the policy goals for using the existing forest identified for that purpose is to add value to it.

“I prefer to see value added — so long as the environment is properly protected — rather than seeing woodchips sailing out to sea,” he said.

Now, disgusting as it is people do throw around Hitler and Stalin analogies like so much confetti at a wedding (between all levels of government and a select group of well-subsidised private interests). I hate this trend as it generally discredits thoroughly justified anger and revulsion. So without specifying a context, let me just say that this comment from Garrett makes me think of a situation where somebody might endorse killing a person and melting down their gold fillings as the far better course of action than simply killing them. The viable option of protecting life where it exists seems preferable to all scenarios apparently on offer, yet all those with responsibility to proclaim as much seem far too scared to do so.

Meanwhile, the guaranteed legal and protest challenges are firming on at least two fronts. Financially agile tourism portal entrepeneur Graeme Woods of Wotif credibility has thrown his hat in the ring, promising a multi-faceted campaign involving Investors for the Future of Tasmania,

“There will be campaigns at all levels, at grassroots levels, at legal levels, and a few others, so it’s far from over this whole debate.”

And to support this position, in addition to all other levels of opposition and challenge now being voiced, the Greens are drawing closer to lodging a formal legal challenge on the basis of Malcolm Turnbull’s conditional approval being legally inoperable within the ambit of the EPBC Act by which he is reluctantly empowered. Bob Brown explains,

“My reading of Environment Protection and Biodiversity Act section 132 (indicates) the minister has not acted within the law,“ Senator Brown said.

“We will have our barristers look at that and they are as we speak,” he said.

“We warned before he made the approval he should act within the law.”

To reclaim a phrase used by knob-headed Liberal supporters wringing their hands in excitement over the possibility that Tony Abbott might challenge Peter Costello for leadership supremacy – Game On.


Written by typingisnotactivism

October 6, 2007 at 2:46 pm

7 Responses

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  1. Congratulations Ben Quin – a rare individual – a man who is prepared to put principles before career. I hope that you stand as an independent candidate. Tasmania needs a lot more politicians of your calibre.

    t.i.n.a.: or maybe join with Terry Martin to form the “A Future Without F#$%wits” Party – get on the Senate ticket too; longer terms and a chance to be where the real federal balance of power action is going to be. I would also think that they’d have a better chance of winning this way as they would benefit from exposure to the whole Tasmanian electorate. . . . and that’s fine with me as long as they don’t pinch votes from Dr. Bob.. . . On second thoughts. . . there is going to be a real balance of power issue in the House of Reps if the marginal ‘glory seats’ in Tassie go to independents instead of to the mainstream machinery. . . Hmmmmmmmmm.

    Dr Warwick Raverty

    October 6, 2007 at 4:03 pm

  2. One thing this miserable business is doing is helping us all see who the people with integrity and life centric principles are.

    Well done Ben. Concerned community members will support you. More and more people in Tas are now talking about voting for the man, not the rhetoric.

    To Warwick I’d have to say that if we had a future without , there’d be plenty of food and energy to go around. No oil crisis, no worries about carbon emissions…hmmm…maybe there’s something to this no F#$%wits movement.

    Mike Bolan

    October 6, 2007 at 5:49 pm

  3. Congratulations Ben. Your life will be a healthier and happier one for having taking this decision. You have displayed the sort of character that people are looking for in a politician. The tragic and perverse thing is that our curent major political parties are also prohibitive of your kind.

    Rick Pilkington

    October 7, 2007 at 1:03 am

  4. Congratulations Ben Quin. To act with such moral authority is to engage with the forces of humanity and civilization down the ages in the endless struggle against fear, greed and rapacity.

    Please stand as an independent Ben. You will get the support of all fair minded people revolted by the immorality of what passes for government in this country. Mike Bolan is right. There is a movement afoot to campaign for the individual representative not the political party. It is piss-weak part allegiance that has got us into this mess.

    Fight on Ben Quin.

    Bob McMahon

    October 7, 2007 at 8:25 am

  5. Always glad to see Tassie supporters find something to be happy about – especially lately. Seems like a while between scoring shots, hey? I agree with you all that the more rare it becomes, the more heartening it is when a politician reasserts their right to use their brain as Quin has done here. I think the only waiver on unconditional support should be an assurance by Quin that if he wins as an Independent, he wouldn’t rejoin the Liberal Party at any cost. I’m just picturing a situation where the election goes down to the wire and Howard is one seat short of a diminished majority. How backfired an outcome would that be?


    October 7, 2007 at 12:34 pm

  6. In OZ we have one of the fairest voting systems available, PR AND Transferable Preference, if only enough people had the wit to use it to the fullest extent.
    But especially in the Senate, look at what happens when a government (of whichever ilk) has control of both Chambers.
    Unfortunately over 97% of people vote above the line in the Senate and that is just insane, it means that the Party grouping decides what to do with the preference if it doesn’t reach a quota.
    How to vote cards should be banned – if you need one you aren’t qualified to cross the road by yourself, let alone vote.

    t.i.n.a.: which all sounds lovely but doesn’t actually add up to dick when there is mob rule and [one party one message] as opposed to a leadership culture which encourages innovation, evolution and risks taken on principle.


    October 7, 2007 at 8:31 pm

  7. I congratulate Ben on his principled stand – he was right to step down rather than feel that he had been muzzled on an issue he obviously feels strongly about. I do note, however, that John Howard has left the door wide open for Ben to rejoin the Libs should he win the seat, and that criticism of Ben is coming from state Libs rather than those at the federal level. This leaves me wondering whether Ben might be a Lib in Greens clothing. Now that Ben is no longer an endorsed Liberal candidate, I look forward to hearing about other Liberal party policies he disagrees with.

    Karen Cassidy

    October 8, 2007 at 4:16 pm

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